Bang bang: Find out how to make flavourful Sichuan style chicken

The nation press services
2021-07-11 | Since 2 Month

Bang bang chicken is a Sichuan dish that’s full of big flavours, the earthiness of sesame oil, the rich of chicken fat, the tingle of chilli oil, the sharp kick of Chinese black vinegar and the cooling heat of ginger.

This is great as a salad, warm, at room temperature or cold. It can also be served over rice, noodles or shredded lettuce for a more filling meal.


For the chicken:

2 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts (225-275g each)

1 tbsp toasted sesame oil

1 tsp salt

½ tsp finely ground black pepper

For the sauce:

¼ cup soy sauce

¼ cup Chinkiang vinegar (Chinese black vinegar) or balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp granulated sugar

2 tbsp chilli crisp or chilli oil

1 tbsp Chinese white sesame paste (optional)

1 tsp toasted sesame oil

1 (2.5cm) piece fresh ginger, peeled and julienned

To serve:

2 Persian cucumbers

½ cup toasted peanuts, optional

2 spring onions

1 cup coriander leaves and stems

Steamed rice; cooked Asian wheat noodles, soba noodles or bean thread noodles; or shredded lettuce


Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 230C.

Rub the chicken with the sesame oil, salt and pepper. Gently slide your finger underneath the skin of each breast to loosen it from the meat; this will encourage the skin to crisp as it cooks. Place the chicken on a large, rimmed baking tray, skin side up. Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the skin is browned and crisp and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a breast reads 70C.

While the chicken is roasting, make the sauce and prepare the garnishes. In a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, chilli crisp or oil, sesame paste, if using, sesame oil and ginger.

To prepare the garnishes, julienne the cucumbers, roughly chop the peanuts, if using, thinly slice the spring onions on a bias and coarsely chop the coriander.

Let the cooked chicken cool for about 10 minutes. Using a rolling pin, gently bang or press down on each chicken piece so the meat breaks and shreds apart a bit. Pull the chicken fully away from the bones, and, if preferred, remove and discard the bones. The chicken should be in chunks and shredded bite-size pieces. Serve the chicken over rice, noodles or shredded lettuce with the cucumbers, peanuts, if using, scallions and coriander sprinkled on top. Scrape any pan drippings into the sauce. Serve it on the side to drizzle generously over each serving.

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